Organization: The Children’s Room

Location: Arlington, MA

Express Interest

About The Children’s Room:

The Children’s Room (TCR) provides grief support services for families and children up to age 19 in its Arlington center as well as in schools and community organizations in the Greater Boston area. Services include peer support groups; a “Parenting While Grieving” educational series; individualized consultations for adults; teen-specific programming; monthly family activity nights; and information and referral services.

TCR was founded by an impassioned group of caregivers who, in 1993, received training from the renowned Oregon-based Dougy Center for Grieving Children. Calling themselves “The Children’s Room,” because they occupied just a single room for their work, they provided services for families dealing with catastrophic loss as a program of Hospice West in Waltham, Massachusetts. By 1995, they embarked on the work of making The Children’s Room an independent, incorporated 501(C)(3).

In April 1999, The Children’s Room opened with eight experienced volunteers serving seven families out of a church basement. Today, The Children’s Room offers services at its center in Arlington, a warm and inviting Victorian house, and at organizations such as Boys & Girls Clubs. Families are referred by teachers, mental health counselors, pediatricians, hospice workers, funeral directors, social workers, and families and volunteers who are or have been a part of our programs. To expand its reach and make grief support services more widely available, TCR trains professionals in social services, education, and healthcare settings with the tools they need to support grieving children and families. TCR also trains graduate and undergraduate students through a rigorous internship program, in order to educate the next generation of professionals entering the fields of mental health counseling, expressive therapies, and social work.

Position Summary:

The Executive Director will be responsible for managing the overall business operations of The Children’s Room to support its mission. With a dedicated team and an engaged Board, the successful candidate will help forge new partnerships to build on The Children’s Room existing programs, increasing the organization’s visibility, impact, and financial resources. The Executive Director will establish, cultivate, and maintain strong working relationships with staff, key stakeholders, and with a network of philanthropic partners, foundations and other partnering organizations, including schools and other nonprofits. In close collaboration with the Board of Directors and staff, this new executive will lead The Children’s Room to its next level, exploring opportunities to leverage and enhance the organization’s current model, programs, and resources.

This leader will be instrumental in developing the strategy to increase the organization’s fundraising potential and activities. This will include the opportunity to build off of and develop comprehensive fundraising strategies with new and innovative approaches, while strengthening current development initiatives through thoughtful cultivation of national level partnerships, managing all major donor (individuals, corporations and foundations) relationships, and working closely with the Board of Directors. With a strong public relations mindset, the Executive Director will be a strong voice for The Children’s Room as the external face of the organization, motivating and inspiring others to support the mission

In partnership with the Board of Directors, the Executive Director will assure that the organization has short- and long-range strategies which achieve its mission and goals with consistent, realistic, and timely progress. This professional will cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board of Directors and ensure open communication about the measurements of financial, programmatic, and impact performance against The Children’s Room milestones and goals. The Executive Director will be committed to supporting existing core programs, maintaining a cohesive, positive organizational culture within The Children’s Room that emphasizes collaboration, collegiality, and accountability while supporting an open climate that attracts, retains, and motivates a diverse staff of top quality people.

This is a full-time position located in Arlington, MA. For more information on The Children’s Room, please visit

Core Competences:

The Executive Director reports to the Board of Directors, and is responsible for the organization’s consistent achievement of its mission and financial objectives.

Provide strategic direction and drive fulfillment of organization’s mission

  • Assure that the strategic goals and objectives of the organizations are carried out
  • Develop with the Board, on a yearly basis, a work plan for the board to monitor execution of The Children’s Room strategic plan
    • Communicate organizations performance and progress against goals using quantitative and qualitative metrics developed jointly with the Board of Directors and staff
    • Maintain official records and documents, and ensure compliance with federal, state, and local regulations

Lead the organization’s philanthropy and marketing efforts

  • Provide leadership in fundraising plans with the Board of the Directors and staff
  • Develop communication strategies to promote and enhance The Children’s Room
  • Publicize the activities of the organization, its programs and goals
  • Establish sound working relationships and cooperative arrangements with community groups and organizations
  • Serve as the organization’s primary public representative

Manage staff and operations

  • Be responsible for the recruitment, employment, and release of all personnel, both paid staff and volunteers
  • Ensure that job descriptions are developed, that regular performance evaluations are held, and that sound human resources policies and practices are in place
  • Encourage and support staff and volunteer development and education
  • Maintain an environment that attracts, keeps, and motivates a diverse staff of top quality people

Establish a budget and manage organizational finances

  • Be responsible for developing and maintaining sound financial practices
  • Work with the staff, Finance Committee, and the board in preparing a budget; see that the organization operates within budget guidelines
  • Jointly, with the President and Secretary of the Board of Directors, conduct official correspondence of the organizations, and jointly, with designated officers, execute legal documents

Partner with the TCR Board of Directors

  • Align and gain approval for annual and long-term objectives
  • Meet regularly with Board and discuss progress, address obstacles, and report on performance
  • Actively participate with the Board on strategic planning initiatives

Desired Competencies:

Delegation Skills

Trusts other people to perform.  Broadly shares responsibility and accountability.  Allow subordinates to perform both important and routine tasks and assignments and trusts others to achieve the desired results.

Strategic Agility

Sees the big picture to identify key areas or underlying issues and to develop effective strategies.  Using broad understanding and viewpoints, can forecast future trends correctly.  Possesses the ability to credibly depict future scenarios, plans and opportunities.

Interpersonal Skills

Builds strong work relationships and adjusts to how individuals, organizations, and cultures function and react. Has the ability to sense how others are feeling and is able to foster rapport with a variety of people.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

Has the ability to creatively build the revenue base by generating investments for the organizations.  Creates revenue by building relationships with those willing to invest in the organizations.


  • Masters degree in nonprofit management, business administrator or equivalent
  • 7-10 years senior nonprofit management experience
  • Understanding of and experience with capacity building programs
  • Proven track record of meeting or exceeding annual fundraising goals
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, including public speaking with both large and small audiences
  • Ability to lead both experienced and junior staff
  • Financial management background
  • Experience working with Board of Directors
  • Passion for the Mission of The Children’s Room

Compensation & Benefits:

Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience.


The Children’s Room has engaged Koya Leadership Partners to help in this hire. Please submit a compelling cover letter and resume to Liz Lombard and Turner Delano here. The Children’s Room is an equal opportunity employer and strongly encourages applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and LGBT applicants.

About Koya Leadership Partners:

Koya Leadership Partners is a national retained executive search and human capital consulting firm that works exclusively with nonprofits and social enterprises. We deliver measurable results, finding exceptionally talented people who truly fit the unique culture of our client organizations and ensuring that organizations have the resources and strategies to support them. For more information about Koya Leadership Partners, visit